Jets should not waste their time signing Kirk Cousins
By William Cochrane
The New York Jets are actively pursuing free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins. With four quarterbacks expected to go early in the 2018 NFL Draft, here’s why Gang Green should not waste their time signing him.
At the start of the 2018 season, quarterback Kirk Cousins will be 30 years of age. The average career span of an NFL quarterback with at least one Pro Bowl appearance is 11.7 years as provided by Statista. Cousins would enter his seventh pro season in 2018. Which would give him five more seasons left in his NFL career, according to the study.
Some of the past great quarterbacks declined in play at the age of 37. As a study by the Boston Globe showed. Players such as Dan Marino, John Elway, and Brett Favre all declined in play. Except for the great Tom Brady, who is still on top of his game at 40.
Barring significant injury, this would give Cousins, five to seven years of good football left in his career. The objective the New York Jets would want if they signed Cousins, would be to win their second Super Bowl championship. The one goal that has neglected the organization since 1968.
After the career year that former Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick had in which he led a team full of high priced veteran players one game away from making the NFL playoffs back in 2015, things weren’t ever the same. The organization recognized that going all out and spending every penny the team had left in cap space was not the way to success and committed themselves to rebuilding reconstructing with youth.
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In an article written by Eric Allen of NewYorkJets.com, owner Woody Johnson stated the following in regards to this:
“If you want to go to the promise land, you have to go in a certain direction. I think what we have done over the years is traded picks away and we’ve had too big of an emphasis on free agency and not enough emphasis on developing our own,” he said.
Cousins, expected to receive the biggest contract by any NFL player in this, his free-agent year, is anticipated to exceed the $27.5 million per year San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo signed. The Jets have $73.2 million in salary-cap space, according to OverTheCap.com. With the expected cuts of Matt Forte and Muhammad Wilkerson, New York could reach $92 million in cap space.
It’s without question that for the Jets to sign Cousins, it would require putting a ton of money into just one positional group instead of using it to build a competitive team at other areas of need. If the Jets were smart, they’d save that money to address their offensive line, pass rush, or even their secondary and use their No. 6 overall pick on one of the top quarterbacks that should be there when they’re on the clock.
The biggest question is, would it make sense to invest so much money into Cousins when his level of play will decline sooner than later? Or are the Jets better off staying patient by drafting one of the four highly touted quarterbacks that are available and continue rebuilding the right way? Building a younger, and over time, longer lasting winning team via the youth process is the better scenario for a team like the Jets.
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Building a team that can win for years to come will give the Jets a much better shot at that elusive Super Bowl Championship they are working so hard to win. A team that would be able to string together multiple winning seasons and playoff appearances over a long period of time. The last thing the Jets need is to go for the quick fix while coming up short. Just to start the rebuilding process once again once Cousins gets to the point where he’s no longer effective.